Some stakeholders in the livestock subsector of the Agriculture sector have raised concerns of an imminent collapse if measures are not put in place to address challenges facing it.
According to them, the poultry industry for instance risks going down if farmers are not protected from the adverse effects of unstable prices.
The Agriculture sector in Ghana which comprises crop production and livestock employs about 43 percent of the population, particularly those living in the hinterlands — on formal and informal basis.
Even though livestock agriculture is widespread in Ghana, it is on a low scale with pockets of poultry, cattle rearing, and grass cutter rearing, among others.
Egg production facing challenges
But players in the poultry industry say egg production which is a key production area under poultry faces a major threat.
Speaking to Citi Business News, the Chairman of the Association of Poultry Farmers in Ghana, Victor Oppong Adjei attributed the threat to unstable prices.
According to him, the situation has left many farmers in debt due to losses.
He argued that the matter if not addressed soon, will have dire consequences on the industry.
“I think if we all have a fixed price it’s going to help the industry because now if you go to the farm one egg is somehow even less than fifty pesewas but we have heard that they are selling some at even one cedi and others so we have taken note of what we’ve just heard and we are working out to see if we can control the prices of eggs,” he hinted.
Mode of transport pushes price
Blaming some Middle men and women for the increase in the price, Mr. Adjei explained that the added cost is the reason why the prices are surging.
Checks by Citi Business News showed that retailers are compelled to add extra cost to the price due to the delicate procedures required in transporting the product.
“You know how important it is to handle eggs with care. So you must be careful in the transportation and that means extra cost to transport,” a retailer narrated.
“The middle men go for the eggs from the farmers. We then go and buy it from them. We sell the fried eggs for one cedi and the fresh ones for seventy pesewas,” another retailer said.
Another intimated, “A crate of eggs is sold for seventeen cedis, sixteen cedis or fifteen cedis depending on the size of the eggs. The biggest size of eggs which is sold for seventeen cedis is termed as G1’’
Meanwhile, Mr. Adjei, stated that it is inperative for players in the industry to come together to deal with the issue.
“As stakeholders , we must come together; it’s always a proper economic management concept that will help the poultry farmers to grow so that if you have the banks ready to give loans to farmers we can grow this,” he said.
He added, ‘it is not like the government trying to give money to farmers but we need systems in place that will guarantee the poultry farmer and business people in the country access to loans and the cost of that borrowing should be manageable”.
By: Anita Arthur/citibusinessnews.com/Ghana